Day 4…or that’s what this calendar in my eye is telling me. But when it says I only got three hours of sleep and I feel fully rested, it’s very difficult to believe it is counting time accurately. Maybe it runs slow when I am not looking? Maybe fast? So much has changed that it’s hard to know what is normal.
After all, we just went out and picked up a freaking parrot who we are told has the mind (soul) of our pack shaman. Maybe shaman’s a good word for these times. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, right? This cheese and cracker plate was made out of thin air (and not my excrement). At least that tastes right.
We went through our gear and got Zach caught up on the plan. Dealt with those nagging existential questions…
Why are we here? Ships captain needed non-police police types.
What is the purpose of life? To help a commune of anarchists enforce free will, by killing a man who opposes their goal…with absolutely no sense of irony.
That brought us to the FREAK FIGHTS.
We were just out scanning for a place to hit Emil Stefansson, but then we found his bar. The Retched Hangover. A scummy den of thieves and inequity, and as we waited to get in a synth by the name of M.C. Carnage put us at the front of the line.
He even gives us the tour. Explains how the Hangover’s scummy decrepit front is just a style choice. How rust-chic is the big style on the DOG this year. And he tells us the “code”. Combat in the flesh. No XP. No VR. Not even cameras. If you want to see the Freak Fights, then you come in the flesh.
Turns out we were a step behind. While Ardent Thunder was busy playing Rehab with Gordon Bane and Zacheaus Middlewater. Randolph Scott and Michael Santoria enlisted the help of Ramone Osorio to form a plan on how to ambush Emil.
Phase 1: Randolph uses his sleeve’s former owner notoriety on the DOG and enters the Freak Fights. Seems a lot of people are willing to pay to see good ole Tori the Traitor bleed. But as a nominally human participant Randolf needed a schtick, something to make the Freak Fight crowds take notice. To that end, nature and his own masculine insights provided a solution…just get naked.
Phase 2: Win fights. Not just win them. Make them decisive. Show he was ready for a bigger challenge than an uplifted pig or an combat AGI shunted into a pleasure pod. Make the case for a championship fight with Tito the reigning Freak.
Phase 3: When Randolf vs. Tito comes about (think King Kong but where the blond can murder the monkey) the time will be right to kill Emil. Emil will have to attend in person, one of his close guards will be in the ring. The other will possible by busy managing the Hangover. Emil will be open and vulnerable. The jammer can be set up without interfering with any transmissions to give away the plan. It will go off like clockwork, if…
…If Roland can win against the curve ball they threw him tonight. Apparently, trying to make a case for a tougher fight worked. Tonight, Randolph Scott faces off with Mangler. Will a cybered out chassis be enough to compete with a bruiser covered in steel? The crowd is hungry to know!